Rhino Horns continue to be Smuggled into Malaysia and Southeast Asia

Rhino Horns continue to be Smuggled into Malaysia and Southeast Asia

The shipment this time was from Mozambique, via Doha in Qatar, and consisted of 18 rhino horns. Alert Malaysian authorities at Kuala Lumpur International Airport managed to seize the horns, which amounted to 51.5kg and would have been worth almost RM14 million on the black market. Acting on a tip, Malaysian customs officers conducted a search of…

Time to get Tough on Animal Trafficking

Time to get Tough on Animal Trafficking

When even seasoned experts are taken aback by the scale of wildlife trafficking across Malaysia, you know we’re in trouble. Yet taken aback experts are at TRAFFIC, an international anti-trafficking watchdog. And rightfully so. Recent arrests of several wildlife traffickers by Malaysian authorities have provided further evidence (not that any more was…

Peacocks lose out to Traditional Medicine

Peacocks lose out to Traditional Medicine

Peacocks are flamboyantly ostentatious birds with giant iridescent tails of blue, green, gold and red that they deftly employ in courtship displays. Unfortunately for the birds, their flashy tail feathers have also caught the eyes of people. Peacocks have long been hunted as trophies and kept as pets. Sadly, the birds are…

Malaysian Officials rescue Scores of Animals from the Exotic Pet Trade

Malaysian Officials rescue Scores of Animals from the Exotic Pet Trade

Another five are down. Wildlife traffickers, that is. In five separate clampdowns on wildlife trafficking in later February, Malaysian authorities seized large numbers of endangered animals from wildlife traders, all of whom will be facing charges under the country’s Wildlife Conservation Act 2010. In one operation Department of Wildlife and…

Sniffing out Wildlife Traffickers

Sniffing out Wildlife Traffickers

Wildlife traffickers tend to be a wily lot. Routinely they can easily avoid wildlife and customs officials by hiding their ill-gotten merchandise of ivory and rhino horns in well-concealed packages. Enter canine wildlife guardians. With their acute sense of smell, which is a thousand times stronger than that of humans, so-called detector dogs are…

‘Most Wanted’ elephant Poachers have been Caught in Kelantan

‘Most Wanted’ elephant Poachers have been Caught in Kelantan

Seven elephant poachers who were labelled “most wanted” by authorities in Peninsular Malaysia are at large no more: they’ve been arrested and are now behind bars. In a joint operation between the Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan) and the country’s Armed Forces, a gang of seven local suspected poachers was caught near the Taman…

Online Wildlife Trade is being ‘Rolled Back,’ but Challenges Remain

Online Wildlife Trade is being ‘Rolled Back,’ but Challenges Remain

A lot of wildlife trafficking in Malaysia takes place in the laissez-faire milieu of the cyber world, where traffickers have taken to hugely popular social media platforms like Facebook to buy and sell protected and endangered species in wanton abandon. Yet if Fakhrul Hatta Musa, deputy director of Wildlife and National Parks Department…

Poachers and Ivory Smugglers must be Stopped

Poachers and Ivory Smugglers must be Stopped

They’re a persistent lot, are they not? Wildlife traffickers, that is. Malaysian authorities have been stepping up their efforts to clamp down on international smuggling networks that use the country as a regional transit point for the trafficking of ivory from Africa. That, though, has clearly not deterred ivory-smuggling syndicates. And so 2017 has started pretty…

Wildlife Crime: an ‘Existential Threat’

Wildlife Crime: an ‘Existential Threat’

Wildlife crimes and corruption routinely go hand in hand. For starters, without certain officials willing to turn a blind eye to rampant trafficking (for kickbacks and other rewards), traffickers would have a much harder time. But the problem can go much deeper than that. A pervasive culture of bribery, money laundering and institutionalized…

WWF wants to Double the number of wild Tigers by 2022

WWF wants to Double the number of wild Tigers by 2022

It’s a poignant irony: one of the world’s most endangered species is also one of its mightiest. Tigers have fallen on hard times throughout their ranges across Asia with only a few thousand of them left in the wild from Siberia to India to Malaysia. At every place where numerous tigers once…

Taking a message of Conservation to schools of Traditional Medicine

Taking a message of Conservation to schools of Traditional Medicine

Traditional medicine, as we have pointed out at this site at length, can be a total menace to endangered species. Much of Malaysia’s and the region’s illegal wildlife trade is driven by a quest for the body parts of rare and “exotic” animals so they can be used for medicinal purposes. Tigers are…

WJC: Facebook is home to ‘Industrial-scale’ Wildlife Trafficking

WJC: Facebook is home to ‘Industrial-scale’ Wildlife Trafficking

Recently the international anti-wildlife trafficking organization TRAFFIC revealed that Facebook, the hugely popular social media platform, has become a hot bed in Malaysia for the illegal trade of protected species as part of a booming exotic pet trade conducted online. After a five-month investigation, TRAFFIC’s researchers discovered that more than…

Sun Bears remain at Risk in Malaysia

Sun Bears remain at Risk in Malaysia

Another day, another development involving one of Malaysia’s perennially beleaguered sun bears. Thankfully, though, this one was a welcome one. Wildlife Department officials in Sabah captured a one-year-old runaway sun bear cub that escaped from her owner in Kg Pangkalan Abai. The young bear, a female, is now safe and…

Perhilitan Officials roll back a major Exotic Pet Network

Perhilitan Officials roll back a major Exotic Pet Network

Score yet another victory up for Malaysian wildlife officials. In a string of five raids conducted simultaneously in the states of Kedah, Selangor and Kelantan, officials from the Department of Wildlife and National Parks Peninsular Malaysia (Perhilitan) seized a total of 32 wild animals, worth more than RM500,000, and arrested…

Nations vow to Save Helmeted Hornbills

Nations vow to Save Helmeted Hornbills

Unless we act, helmeted hornbills will go extinct in the wild. This isn’t a bit of alarmism; it’s a fact. The beautiful birds have been poached mercilessly across their range for their casques (helmet-like structures atop their beaks), which are highly prized as decorative items in China and Vietnam. In…